French News Wednesday 14th September 2016


Harmony of the Seas - One person has died and four others have been injured after a lifeboat became detached from the world's biggest cruise liner. The tragedy took place during a training exercise on board the Harmony of the Seas as it docked in the French port of Marseille. Two of the injured are thought to be fighting for their lives. According to reports, crew members were testing a lifeboat on the fifth level of the ship when it fell 30 feet. A full investigation is being carried out into the accident.

Jungle – It’s emerged that France will create 12,000 new homes in remote southern parts of the country to house migrants currently living at the lawless Jungle camp in Calais. Thousands of migrants will be moved into the new accommodation "by the end of the year" as the French government accelerates long-held plans to raze the Jungle to the ground. Official Ministry of Interior documents, revealed by the newspaper Le Figaro, show that ministers have ruled out rehousing migrants in the Ile-de-France area, which surrounds the capital, and Corsica. Instead some 1,800 people will be sent to the remote Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in the south east of the country, whilst a further 1,500 are to be allocated to New Aquitaine in the south west.

Trains - A new app has been introduced allowing commuters on the regional PACA train network to report problems encountered during their journey in real time. ‘OUR TER PACA’ will allow passengers to comment on delays, rudeness, lack of information and cancellations. The app is currently available on android smartphones and will be available on the App Store from Monday 19th September.


Weather Alert - Around 80,000 households were without electricity early Tuesday evening in the Southwest of France due to a severe  storms and flooding. The alert which has been lifted in the Dordogne, Gironde, Landes, Lot-et-Garonne and Pyrénées-Atlantiques still remains in place for thirteen other departments in the Southwest.

Alstom - The government is putting pressure on Alstom to save its Belfort production site. The move follows Alstom's announcement last week that it would halt production at the locomotive factory in eastern France. Alstom said it wanted to centralise its train production at a site 200 kilometres further north in Alsace and promised to offer the 400 workers in Belfort other jobs.However, after a cabinet meeting on Monday, Transport Minister Alain Vidalies said production at the site would now continue "in the same proportions as the current level".


Media reports this morning suggest that a deal between the German drugs and chemicals giant Bayer and the US seeds firm Monsanto is imminent. The BBC reports that the takeover would follow several months of talks and is thought to value Monsanto at 66 billion dollars.German media reports that Bayer has increased its offer to 129 dollars per share with Reuters saying that the deal will be announced sometime today. The takeover would create the world’s largest seeds and pesticides firm and would make the new company the market leader in the US,Europe and Asia. Monsanto has attracted widespread criticism for its genetically modified seeds for crops including corn,soybeans,cotton,wheat and sugar cane. Any deal is almost certain to attract the attention of competition regulators because of the sheer size of the new company and the control that it would have over the global seeds and pesticides markets.

The British pound has registered its biggest falls in more than 5 weeks after came in below analysts’ forecasts suggesting an uncertain economic outlook post Brexit. Sterling fell against a basket of major currencies after consumer price-growth remained unchanged from last month at 0.6 percent. Analysts say that investors and traders have been selling sterling ahead of policy meetings by the Federal Reserve and the Bank of Japan next week. The pound fell by 1.2 percent against the US dollar to I dollar 31.75 and by 1.3 percent against the euro to 85.3 pence. Sterling is still down by around 11 percent  against the US dollar since the Brexit vote.

And-SpaceX says that it’s planning to resume flights in November following a launch pad fire that destroyed a Falcon 9 rocket and an Israeli communications satellite that it had planned to launch into orbit. The company suspended Falcon 9 flights pending investigations as to why the rocket burst into flames on the 1st of September as it was being fuelled for a routine pre-launch test at Cape Canaveral. A spokesman for SpaceX said that the company envisaged being out of action for around 3 months but did not explain what repairs might be necessary to the rocket.The accident completely destroyed the 200 million dollar satellite belonging to Israel Space Communication.


Football-Arsenal scraped a draw away at PSG in last night’s Champions League Group A match with Alexis Sanchez salvaging a point for the Gunners after the French side had been much the better side for most of the game. The other group A match ended Basel 1 Ludo 1. In Group B Benfica and Besikstas drew 1 all while Napoli were 2-1 away winners at Dynamo Kiev. In Group C Barcelona thrashed sorry Celtic 7-0 while the match between Manchester City and Borussia Munchengladbach was postponed until tonight because of torrential rain and storms before kick off. In Group D Bayern Munich brushed Rostov aside 5-0 and PSV lost 1-0 at home to Athletico Madrid. There are 9 more Champions League games tonight with Manchester City and Borussia Munchengladbach playing that rearranged fixture in Group C. In Group E Bayer Leverkuesen play CSKA and Spurs host Monaco. In Group F it’s Legia Warsaw against Borussia Dortmund while in Group G Brugge play Leicester and Porto meet Copenhagen. In Group H Juventus play Sevilla and Lyon face Dynamo Zagreb. There was a full programme in the English Championship last night. The leaders Huddersfield lost 1-0 at Brighton with second placed Newcastle thrashing QPR 6-0 at Loftus Road. Barnsley stay in third following a 4-0 win at Wolves while Norwich are up to 4th place thanks to a 2-1 win against Wigan. In the other results Derby lost 1-0 at home to Ipswich.Fulham and Burton Albion drew 1-1.Leeds beat Blackburn 2-1.Preston beat Cardiff 3-0.Sheffield Wednesday were 3-2 winners over Bristol City  and Reading and Birmingham drew 0-0.

Athletics-China still leads the medals table at the Paralympic Games in Rio with 147 medals including 63 golds with Team GB in second place with 34 gold medals in a total of 75 and Ukraine still in third place. Libby Clegg made it a sprint double for Team UK on day 6 of the games as she won the T11 200 meters gold medal to go with her success in the 100 meters on Saturday. There was also success for Stephanie Millward in the S8 100 meters backstroke and for Matt Wylie in the men’s S9 50m freestyle. Team UK has already equalled the number of gold medals that they won at the London games in 2012.

Cricket-West Indies have announced a parting of the ways with head coach Phil Simmons just 5 months after he guided the side to success in the Twenty20 World Cup final. The West Indies board cited “differences in culture and strategic approach”for the decision. Simmons has been critical of team selection and was dismissed and then reinstated following remarks that he made last year.

Rugby Union-The 6 Nations will not be moved from its traditional February to March slot as World Rugby prepares to unveil its new international calendar. Media reports say that in general,there will be fewer international matches with summer tours set to be scrapped once per four-year-cycle. The changes are set to be ratified at the next meeting of the World Rugby Council meeting in November.


Starting fine but clouding over with rain and thunderstorms reaching most areas by late afternoon. Moderate easterly winds and a high of 27 degrees Celsius in coastal areas.

More rain and storms tonight with lows of 22 degrees on the coast and 18 degrees inland.

Thursday and Friday-Rain tomorrow morning,clearing as the day goes on.Partially cloudy on Friday with the chance of some more storms in the Var.